The Philadelphia Eagles are saddened to learn of the passing of Jim Gallagher, an Eagles Hall of Fame inductee who served as a team executive from 1949-95.
Gallagher passed away Friday morning in Plymouth Meeting, Pennsylvania at the age of 88.
"Jim was one of the kindest and most remarkable men you could ever meet," said Chairman and CEO Jeffrey Lurie. "His dedication to this organization went far beyond the 46 years he spent here, and his impact was far reaching. Everyone who was fortunate enough to meet Jim knows how much he loved the Eagles, but also how much he truly cared for and invested in the lives of others. To borrow one of his famous phrases, Jim was a 'first-round pick.' On behalf of the entire Eagles family, I would like to extend our condolences to the Gallaghers."
One of the longest-tenured executives in franchise history, Gallagher joined the Eagles in 1949 and served in multiple roles – both in football operations and on the business side – during his employment with the team. He was named personnel director in 1957 before assuming the roles of director of public relations, director of sales and marketing, director of alumni relations, and finally as the traveling secretary. It was in that capacity that he served until retiring on August 1, 1995. Following his retirement, Gallagher continued to have a presence around the organization until the time of his passing by making routine visits to the practice facility and the press box on gamedays.
During his 46-year stint with the Eagles, Gallagher worked with 17 head coaches and for 12 owners, general managers, and team presidents.
Gallagher is one of two team executives to have been inducted into the Eagles Hall of Fame, earning his place in the exclusive club in 1995.
Born on July 19, 1929 in Philadelphia, Gallagher was a graduate of Northeast Catholic High School. He later joined the U.S. Army and served in the Korean War.
Gallagher is survived by his wife, Betty, of 59 years, three sons (Jim Jr., Brendan, and Keith), three daughters (Lizanne, Meg, and Rosemary), and 16 grandchildren.
Funeral arrangements are pending.